The fifth excavation season of the Blackfriary Community Archaeology Project was officially launched on Monday, 12th May in Trim library, when plans for a pop-up museum were also announced.
Over 80 members of the local community along with students from Ohio State University, Irish Archaeology Field School students and Italian students attended the launch, which was hosted by Dr Loreto Guinan, Meath County Council Heritage Officer.
The 2014 season was officially launched by Councillor James O’Shea, Cathaoirleach of Trim Town Council and Councillor John V Farrelly, Cathaoirleach of Meath County Council.
Fiona Skehan, Trim Town Clerk and Dr Stephen Mandal, co-founder of the project, announced the launch of a pop-up museum, part funded by the Heritage Council, which will be located in Trim library for the 2014 season.
The pop-up museum will not just showcase the heritage of the Blackfriary site, and the town of Trim, but will also provide a mechanism for active community participation in our heritage.
Finola O’Carroll, co-founder of the project and archaeological director of the excavations, spoke about the results of the project so far and research objectives for the 2014 season.
Professor Alison Beach of Ohio State University spoke about her experience of participating in the project saying: “It’s great for OSU students to have the opportunity not just to read about medieval heritage or see pictures of it in lectures, but to literally uncover it themselves. We are so proud to be a part of that.”
The Blackfriary project and heritage of Trim drew worldwide attention last year after being included in the National Geographic Book ‘100 Places That Can Change Your Child’s Life’. Author Keith Bellow, in an interview with CNN Travel, listed his Top 10 experiences from the book, with Trim, and the archaeological project at the Blackfriary, among them.
The Blackfriary Community Archaeology Project is a community archaeology initiative of Trim Town Council, Meath County Council and the Blackfriary community group.